Sunday, October 23, 2011

Further Thinking about Unit Design

"We do not start with content; we start with what students are expected to be able to do with content.  What would real use of content look like? What should students ultimately be able to say and do with content if they 'get it'? And if that's what real learning looks like, what should be taught--and how--to make it most likely that teaching leads to fluent, flexible, and lasting learning?"  --Wiggins & McTight, 2011, p. 7.
As we continue to think purposefully about our planning, I wanted to offer some further thinking about unit design.  Once you have determined what is essential in your curriculum, or what is essential to the two units you department has decided to revisit, you will organize your unit information into three parts:
1.  Desired Results: What students will know, understand, and do (KUD).
2.  Acceptable Evidence:  What the summative assessment will look like and what level of proficiency is considered acceptable.
3.  Learning Experiences and Instruction: Some sample learning experiences.
I will spend some time in future blog posts writing about each of these three parts.  I will also spend some time with department chairs and anyone else who is interested explaining this information.
One of the keys is to balance when you read and access this information.  My goal is to have it accessible to you so that when you begin the work on your unit plan, you have had an opportunity to read and think about these expectations.
My goal for putting this out here now is so that you can begin to get a sense of what all of this will begin to look like.  Our School Improvement Plan (SIP) is written using a similar format.  You may want to take a look at it to see a kind of example.
This work will be challenging, and I believe it will be rewarding as well.



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